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RD-200- Know where you are?

RD-200- Know where you are?

Icom, the Japanese manufacturer better known for radio, is gradually introducing a range of competitively priced marine navigation products. The latest of these is the RD-200, an affordable Differential GPS (DGPS) receiver that enhances GPS performance and can improve positioning accuracy to within 2.5m.

DGPS is a system designed to enhance the accuracy of GPS based navigation. Essentially, the unit receives a position correction transmission from a land-based reference station. This information is then passed to a compatible GPS receiver that applies the correction data to its position calculation, resulting in a position accuracy of about 2.5~5.0m. This level of accuracy can be extremely useful for many mariners, especially high speed craft, divers and fisherman.

The RD-200 has been designed to interface with Icom’s FP-561 plotter/sounder, but it can also be interfaced with other compatible GPS receivers. To ensure that the unit can operate with new reference stations around the world, both manual and automatic tuning options are available. In automatic mode the unit will quickly locate the strongest correction signal, whilst the supplied handbook details current stations for fast direct selection. The RD-200 also operates at both 100 and 200 baud for compatibility with all current and planned stations.

By adopting a disc-style loop antenna the unit is both compact in size, standing only 6 inches high, and very lightweight, at only 1kg. This configuration is ideal for RIB’s and other high-speed craft, where whip-style antennas can prove unreliable. The RD-200 can be mounted directly, via an internal 1in. thread, or using the supplied extension pipe, which allows it to be fixed to the top of any pole or post. Historically, the benefits of DGPS have attracted high prices. However, Icom’s years of receiver manufacturing experience have enabled us to produce a unit that brings DGPS within reach of every serious mariner. Priced at £275 inc VAT, the RD-200 offers superb value for money.

The RD-200 will be launched at the London International Boat Show and stock will appear in shops from February.

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